Back to Blog

Build a Strong Board, Grow the Company

    

There is no doubt that starting a business is exhilarating, especially when you have the chance to be a part of a dedicated and like-minded team. For those overcome by the entrepreneurial spirit, it is tempting to dive right in and get things going as quickly as possible. Of course, funding tends to be an initial concern, and venture capital backing is generally ideal for innovative startups. Companies that manage to snag such funding, in particular, must be sure to capitalize on that connection beyond just taking the actual capital that is offered. 

 

In fact, an important step to take from the outset involves establishing a solid and dependable board of directors. For many businesses, the composition of the board and its involvement can make or break a company’s success. By building a strong board, a startup can put itself in a much better position to grow the company and here is why:

An Invested Team of Advisors

In far too many cases, the members of a board act in a rather perfunctory fashion, taking on the title but not necessarily any of the actual responsibility. Companies may or may not thrive despite this lackadaisical approach from the board. However, for a lot of the companies that have achieved great success, the board has played an integral part in their rise. After all, companies that invest some serious time and effort into handpicking the members of their board are essentially creating an advisory dream team. The CEO and other leaders must look for a talented group of folks to serve as a sounding board and offer guidance on the basis of their own robust business backgrounds.

An Array of Experiences

One way to ensure that the board adds value to the company is to ensure that it is composed of individuals with an array of experiences. Obviously, if the company exists within a particular industry or serves a specific market, it is wise to have people with the appropriate knowledge and skills pertaining to that sector. However, the board must have some diversity as well and be a well-rounded group so that different experiences and insights will be presented. Companies do not necessarily benefit if everyone sees things in the exact same way.

An External Source of Opinions

Once the board has been created, the company leaders must not let their egos interfere with potential opportunities. Ideas should be presented at meetings and opinions openly shared and accepted, and this has to come from both sides of the table. Although company leaders may understand the inner workings of the business’s day-to-day operations, the board’s somewhat outsider views and opinions can help to shake things up in a positive manner. 

An Opportunity to be Challenged

Of course, in addition to seeking the advice and opinion of the board members, it is also important to be receptive to any challenges they pose, no matter how uncomfortable this may seem. Companies that succeed are the ones that constantly strive to improve and are willing to identify and rectify any perceived weaknesses and deficiencies. And, in many cases, it is the push back from the board that drives the necessary transformations that ultimately lead to growth.

Download 8 myths about investors